Issue 2 2020

CORPORATE VISION / Issue 2 2020 23 , Nov19231 Searching for “The Better Idea” The one-stop-shop for the bathroom, kitchen, laundry and living, WENKO-WENSELAAR GmbH& Co. KG has been synonymous with quality for the last 60 years. Always in hot pursuit of “the better idea”, it is a leading provider of product solutions the length and breadth of Europe. Recently namedMost Outstanding Laundry Care Solutions 2020 – Germany by Corporate VisionMagazine, we take a closer look at this iconic firm. Not many businesses can claim to still be going strong after over sixty years, but since 1959, WENKO has gone from strength to strength in the marketplace. It is a household name, always pushing forwards with ingenuity and innovative power that is characterised by impressive user convenience and a fair price. This not-inconsiderable success has outgrown the company’s native Germany, with subsidiaries in France, Spain, Italy, the USA as well as in China allowing WENKO products to be found in more than eighty countries. The success of WENKO’s approach has allowed for the development of a comprehensive product portfolio. These products are not only customised to various target groups but are all available from one source. All channels of distribution are utilised, with physical shops, mail-order and eCommerce all having a role to play in the venture. An advantage for partners is the support of WENKO’s sales representatives, who in turn are supported by a professional merchandising agency. Similarly, an internal WENKO Category Management Team draws up target group- related and high-turnover modules and placings in close cooperation with these partners. The success of the firm is due in no small part to the sheer quantity of items that it produces and sells. Inhouse designers create unique and often rewarded products, with roughly 500 launched every year; of those 500 articles 225 are coming with legal protections. This is a credit to the business model of searching for “the better idea” and is proof of its highly innovative capacity. While having its own distribution channels, WENKO also serves other organisations. DIY stores as well as supermarkets, department stores, discounters and furniture shops benefit from its considerable catalogue, along with mail-order companies and online shops. Making contact with them at events such as the Ambiente Fair in Frankfurt is one of the most important ways of communicating with such a diverse group of businesses. B2B communications have become increasingly important, with the need to present WENKO as a brand to companies as well as customers a priority. The future presents a variety of challenges for WENKO to face. Sustainability is one of the main priorities, however. With almost 6,000 products in the range, delivered to more than 80 countries, the firm has no doubts it cannot be 100% sustainable, but it is making moves to protect the environment as best it can. Packaging is reviewed constantly to remove excess plastics, with a good example being the recent reworking of the wall mounted series range and the result of totally redesigned plastics in the packaging. Instead of wooden products, WENKO has moved towards using bamboo as it is both a sustainable and fast-growing resource. Products are made of recycled plastics. As part of the BSCI (Business Social Compliance Initiative), it is able to offer FSC certified articles. A sign of the way in which the company has pivoted as a whole can be seen in the three bee colonies which the company now own and are cared for by a voluntary team of employees. The clear success of WENKO cannot be overstated, with the need to come up with “the better ideas” pushing the company to continually innovate and move forward. Ironically, it is this approach of constant revolution that has allowed the firm to remain a steadfast force in German business, and that will keep it in a prime position for years to come. Contact: Saskia Dieck Web Address: